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In an evolving business environment, the ability to position yourself competitively is important. As pressure on utilities increases to operate more efficiently and keep costs down, workforce management can significantly influence that objective.

A new study seems to show that utilities are seeing workforce management as a way of doing just that. It predicts that global utility spending on mobile workforce management solutions will reach $518.2 million by 2027.

  1. Increased investment

According to the study by Navigant, utilities will increase investments in mobile workforce management solutions to address challenges resulting from an increase in distributed energy resources and prosumers.

2. Improved operations and digital integration

The use of mobile workforce solutions is expected to help utilities to improve operational efficiencies, cost reductions, worker safety and the overall customer experience.

The technologies help energy providers optimise management of distributed energy resources through real-time monitoring, quick identification of failing assets and improved communication with field workers for quick restoration of services.

Michael Kelly, research analyst with Navigant, said: “Despite the challenges of implementing and upgrading mobile workforce management technologies (MWMT), utilities have already seen the value in these solutions.

“Developed regions that may have had workforce management solutions are strategically evaluating important upgrades, while those in developing regions are budgeting for initial deployments that will lead to greater efficiencies and cost savings.”

Increased utility focus on digitisation and mobility and in adoption of advanced consumer mobile devices will drive the market growth.

3. Proactive response to storm and outage restoration

As extreme weather events and ageing infrastructure intersect, outages are becoming more frequent. Mobile workforce management applications such as "modern scheduling and mobility capabilities (as part of an advanced distribution management system or ADMS) presents an opportunity for utilities seeking to achieve their reliability metrics and increase customer satisfaction goals, according to Field Service Digital.

Intel estimates that the use of workforce management can improve workforce productively by 30%,  improve workforce field safety by 10% and decrease overall maintenance costs by up to 40%.

The increased utilisation of mobile applications, therefore, provides utilities with the opportunity to adjust existing workflows and automate manual processes in order to improve asset management, workforce deployment and improve customer service.

 

The Navigant report, Utility Mobile Workforce Management Technologies, examines the global market drivers and challenges influencing the deployment of utility MWMT.